Police urge care on the roads as temperatures set to rise | Norfolk Constabulary

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Police urge care on the roads as temperatures set to rise

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Norfolk Police are advising people to limit their journeys and drive with care as temperatures are expected to rise today following the recent freezing weather conditions.                                                                                       

It comes as the Met Office has said that temperatures will remain above freezing for most parts of Norfolk today reaching highs of around three degrees Celsius meaning snow and ice will slowly start to thaw resulting in surface water and the potential for localised flooding on many roads.

Although a thaw is forecast, temperatures overnight will still struggle to get above freezing point so the threat of ice on many roads remains.

Chief Inspector Sonia Humphreys from the Contact and Control Room (CCR) said: "Although the roads seem to be clearer than in recent days, we are still asking members of the public to limit their travel and to try and share journeys with neighbours, friends and family to put less pressure on the road networks.

"We’ve had fresh snow fall overnight so the roads are still icy and some rural roads, particularly in South Norfolk, are treacherous or remain blocked. We will continue to work with partner agencies to prioritise these blocked routes.

"If you do need to travel, the advice to motorists remains the same - please drive to the road conditions. It’s not a case of how suitable your vehicle is or how good a driver you are; many of these incidents happen without warning and the only way to avoid them is by not being on the road in the first place.

"I also want to urge anyone who is thinking of going out tonight in our town and city centres to make sure you dress appropriately and you pre-plan your journey home with friends before you venture out.

"In addition, if you have planned to go to an event in the county today or tomorrow, please check with the organisers that it is still taking place before you travel.

"If you do get stuck and feel you are in danger, please call us on 101 or in an emergency 999.

"I would once again like to take this opportunity to thank those members of the public, particularly within the farming community, who have volunteered their time and equipment to help those in need over the last few days."

Drivers who need to travel are advised to:

  • Plan ahead – check your route on a planner to see the latest traffic updates
  • Tell friends or family about your travel plans – inc route – and let them know when you’ve arrived
  • Make sure you vehicle is clear of snow/ice, has sufficient fuel and screen wash
  • Allow plenty of time for your journey
  • Travel at a low speed avoiding sudden braking/steering moves
  • Keep a sensible distance between you and the car in front
  • Use headlights – do not rely solely on daytime running lights
  • If visibility falls below 100m use your fog lights
  • Take provisions (blanket, warm clothing, food/water)
  • Charge your phone before setting off
  • If you get stuck in the snow stay with your car, but in an emergency if you do need to leave it, park it out of the main traffic route, where it won't cause an obstruction when conditions ease. Please then call police on 101 – or email us – and let us know you are safe and well, as well as providing the index, make and model of your vehicle, along with the location and your contact details. If you cannot do this, leave a contact number on the inside of the windscreen. Please return to your car at the first opportunity you have.  

Norfolk Constabulary and its partner agencies will continue to monitor the weather and work together to offer the county support over the weekend.

Members of the public can follow @norfolkpolice and the Norfolk Constabulary Facebook page for updates and areas to avoid.

Previous releases

Latest advice as freezing temperatures continue

Norfolk Police are today (Friday 2 March) continuing to work with partner agencies as freezing temperatures maintain their grip on the county.

Representatives from a number of agencies including Norfolk County Council Highways, the Volunteer 4x4 Emergency Response Service, Norfolk Lowland Search and Rescue, Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service and the Red Cross are at Norfolk Constabulary Headquarters in Wymondham co-ordinating resources so they are mobilised and able to respond effectively, providing support to motorists where needed across the county.

Chief Inspector Sonia Humphreys said: “The multi-agency hub worked very well yesterday so we are continuing with the same approach today with agencies coming together to plan and direct the resources where the need is most.

“Norfolk Police have dealt with 1,800 incidents* since the snow hit the county with 118 incidents overnight alone.

“Roads are continuing to be affected with the main problem being snow drifts. We have also seen a number of cases where cars have been abandoned and we are working to try and clear these from the roads as soon as possible. If you do find yourself in a situation where you are having to leave your car, please try and move them off the carriageway if you can.

“More snow is predicted in the county from mid-afternoon which may cause further problems and we would urge those people who can, to consider their return from work earlier. We want to ensure people who are on the roads get home safely.

“The advice to motorists remains the same, please drive to the road conditions and only make the journeys that you absolutely have to. We know after several days of disruption that many people may need to make essential journeys but if you must travel, please consider sharing lifts with friends and neighbours to put less pressure on the road networks.

"It’s not a case of how suitable your vehicle is or how good a driver you are; many of these incidents happen without warning and the only way to avoid them is by not being on the road in the first place. Roads in more rural locations are particularly badly affected, with some areas still impassable at present.

“If you have planned to go to an event in the county over the weekend, please check with the organisers that it is still taking place before you travel.

"If you do get stuck and feel you are in danger, please call us on 101 or in an emergency 999.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank those members of the public, particularly within the farming community, who have volunteered their time and equipment to help those in need.”

Drivers who need to travel at any point today are advised to:

·        Plan ahead – check your route on a planner to see the latest traffic updates

·        Tell friends or family about your travel plans – inc route – and let them know when you’ve arrived

·        Make sure you vehicle is clear of snow/ice, has sufficient fuel and screenwash

·        Allow plenty of time for your journey

·        Travel at a low speed avoiding sudden braking/steering moves

·        Keep a sensible distance between you and the car in front

·        Use headlights – do not rely solely on daytime running lights

·        If visibility falls below 100m use your fog lights

·        Take provisions (blanket, warm clothing, food/water)

·        Charge your phone before setting off

·        If you get stuck in the snow stay with your car, but in an emergency if you do need to leave it, park it out of the main traffic route, where it won't cause an obstruction when conditions ease. Please then call police on 101 – or email us – and let us know you are safe and well, as well as providing the index, make and model of your vehicle, along with the location and your contact details. If you cannot do this, leave a contact number on the inside of the windscreen. Please return to your car at the first opportunity you have.  

Norfolk Constabulary and its partner agencies will continue to monitor the weather and work together to offer the county support over the weekend.

Members of the public can follow @norfolkpolice and the Norfolk Constabulary Facebook page for updates and areas to avoid.

*Figures are from midnight Tuesday 27 February until 9am today (Friday 2 March).

Motorists urged to only make essential journeys

Motorists are being reminded to only make journeys that are absolutely necessary, following a spate of overnight traffic incidents caused by the severe weather conditions.

High winds during the night have caused snowdrifts to quickly engulf roads, leaving vehicles stranded and many roads impassable across the county.

Police are currently urging motorists to avoid the following roads:  

  • The A140 between Pulham and Long Stratton in both directions
  • The A1075 between Shipdham and Watton in both directions
  • The A134 at Mundford in both directions
  • Reepham Road in Norwich both directions
  • Northern Distributor Route at its junction with the A140

Since 6pm yesterday, police have assisted with 118 calls relating to highway obstructions/RTCs

Chief Inspector Sonia Humphreys said: "We keep repeating the message but it’s never any less important and it always remains the same: drive to the road conditions and please only make the journeys that you absolutely have to.  

"We are still finding lots of motorists using stretches of road that are extremely treacherous and many of the cases we’ve dealt with overnight have been due to snow that has very rapidly drifted onto a road, submerging it and leaving it inaccessible in a short space of time.

"It’s not a case of how suitable your vehicle is or how good a driver you are; many of these incidents happen without warning and the only way to avoid them is by not being on the road in the first place. Roads in more rural locations are particularly badly affected, with some areas still impassable at present.

"If you do get stuck and feel you are in danger, please call us on 101 or 999 if an emergency."

Drivers who need to travel at any point today are advised to:

  • Plan ahead – check your route on a planner to see the latest traffic updates
  • Tell friends or family about your travel plans – include the route – and let them know when you’ve arrived
  • Make sure you vehicle is clear of snow/ice, has sufficient fuel and screenwash
  • Allow plenty of time for your journey
  • Travel at a low speed avoiding sudden braking/steering moves
  • Keep a sensible distance between you and the car in front
  • Use headlights – do not rely solely on daytime running lights
  • If visibility falls below 100m use your fog lights
  • Take provisions (blanket, warm clothing, food/water)
  • Charge your phone before setting off
  • If you get stuck in the snow stay with your car, but in an emergency if you do need to leave it, park it out of the main traffic route, where it won't cause an obstruction when conditions ease.
  • Leave a contact number on the inside of the windscreen and return to your car at the first opportunity you have.  

Members of the public can follow @norfolkpolice and the Norfolk Constabulary Facebook page for updates and areas to avoid.

Members of the public are asked to report any non-urgent matters online at www.norfolk.police.uk. In an emergency, always dial call 999.

Message to stranded motorists: 'call us if you're in danger'

Drivers stranded in the severe weather conditions are being urged to call police on 101 or 999 if they feel in danger.

It comes after several people had to be rescued after becoming stranded in snowdrifts caused by strong winds in areas across the county.

Officers working with partner agencies and volunteers have gone to the aid of several motorists stranded in the treacherous conditions.

Drivers should only travel if absolutely necessary and anyone intending on travelling is urged to plan ahead and tell others about their journey plans.

Since midnight, police have received:

  • 150 calls relating to highway obstructions
  • 19 damage only RTCs
  • Three injury RTCs

Chief Inspector Sonia Humphreys, from Norfolk’s Contact and Control Room, said the warning remained the same – only travel if absolutely necessary.

She said: "People do seem to be taking heed of the message. However, we’ve attended a number of areas today, particularly in rural locations, where motorists have become stranded.

"Roads in the more rural locations are heavily affected with areas virtually impassable because of ice and snowdrifts.

"The reality is that due to the size and nature of the county, there could be other drivers stuck in remote locations we don’t know about. Equally, people in those locations may not know exactly where they are. However, we would ask that you provide emergency services with as much information as you possibly can about your location to help ensure we are able to find you as soon as possible.

"Our advice to anyone stranded is to make contact with family or friends and make arrangements to get somewhere safe. If you do feel in danger – please call 101 or 999 so we can help you. We are monitoring social media but please don’t rely on this if you are in danger – you need to make that call.”

Drivers who need to travel are advised to:

  • Plan ahead – check you route on a planner to see the latest traffic updates
  • Tell friends or family about your travel plans – inc route – and let them know when you’ve arrived
  • Make sure you vehicle is clear of snow/ice, has sufficient fuel and screenwash
  • Allow plenty of time for your journey
  • Travel at a low speed avoiding sudden braking/steering moves
  • Keep a sensible distance between you and the car in front
  • Use headlights – do not rely solely on daytime running lights
  • If visibility falls below 100m use your fog lights
  • Take provisions (blanket, warm clothing, food/water)
  • Charge your phone before setting off
  • If you get stuck in the snow stay with your car, but in an emergency if you do need to leave it, park it out of the main traffic route, where it won't cause an obstruction when conditions ease. Leave a contact number on the inside of the windscreen and return to your car at the first opportunity you have.  

Members of the public can follow @norfolkpolice and the Norfolk Constabulary Facebook page for updates and areas to avoid.

Snow and ice continue to affect roads

Police are urging drivers to only travel if absolutely necessary as severe weather conditions continue to affect roads.

Snow drifts and ice are making driving conditions extremely hazardous, which has resulted in a number of incidents this morning, including;

  • Jack-knifed lorry on A134 – road is currently closed between the Mundford roundabout on the A1065 and the A11
  • Two-vehicle RTC on the A143 at Belton
  • Lorry blocking the A146 at Hales

Since midnight, police have received 64 calls relating to highway obstructions, nine RTC damage only and one injury RTC.

Chief Inspector Sonia Humphreys, from Norfolk’s Contact and Control Room, said: “The primary advice to drivers is to only travel if absolutely necessary.

“While the roads may looks clearer today, the conditions are in fact worse than yesterday because road surfaces are extremely icy. This combined with snow drifts due to the heavy winds is making driving conditions very treacherous.

“We’re dealing with a number of incidents across the county at the moment. I would urge drivers, particularly those of HGVs, to travel with extreme care – we want everyone to arrive at their destination safely.”  

Police will continue to work with partner agencies today, including Norfolk County Council, to ensure everything is being done to keep people safe.

Members of the public can follow  @norfolkpolice and the Norfolk Constabulary Facebook page for updates and areas to avoid.

Members of the public are asked to report any non-urgent matters online at www.norfolk.police.uk. In an emergency, always dial call 999

Officers have this advice to make sure your vehicle is prepared ahead of your journey:

  • Always ensure all windows are fully cleared of snow, frost and condensation before setting off on a journey - it is illegal to drive with obscured vision.
  • Ensure that dirt, salt and snow is cleared away from light fixtures.
  • Also clear snow from the top of the car as this can fall down and obscure your windscreen while you are driving.
  • Keep windscreen washer fluid topped up as windscreens quickly become dirty from traffic spray and salt from the roads.
  • If you get stuck in the snow stay with your car, but in an emergency if you do need to leave it, park it out of the main traffic route, where it won't cause an obstruction when conditions ease. Leave a contact number on the inside of the windscreen and return to your car at the first opportunity you have.
  • Allow extra time for your journeys
  • Reduce speed gradually – sharp braking in freezing conditions can result in a skid
  • Increase distance between you and the vehicle in front
  • Make sure you have sufficient fuel
  • Make sure you have plenty of layers and blankets
  • Take a fully charged mobile phone with you
  • Take provisions with you for long periods of time in your car

Black ice warning to drivers as temperatures drop further

Police are continuing to urge drivers to take care and be cautious of black ice as temperatures are expected to drop further.

Driving conditions are likely to worsen as standing water freezes and motorists are still being advised to only make essential journeys.

It's after a number of jack-knifed lorries and broken down vehicles caused problems this morning on all main roads around Norwich on the A47, A11, A140 and A146.

While the reported number of collisions remains low, the road conditions are making travel difficult with some journeys near to impossible.

Officers are also urging drivers of HGVs to stick to the left hand lanes on dual carriageways due to the weather conditions.

Police have been liaising with partners including Norfolk County Council throughout the day and will continue to do as we move into the evening.

Superintendent Chris Harvey said: "We’ve had officers out across the county working to clear blocked roads and helping stranded motorists, making sure they’re ok and offering hot drinks.

"As we move into the evening, drivers need to be cautious of black ice. While the roads may look clearer there will be hidden dangers as any standing water freezes.

"Our advice remains the same – drive to the conditions and only travel if your journey is absolutely necessary.

"Drivers of heavy goods vehicles should avoid using the fast lanes on dual carriageways – several lorries caused significant delays on main routes this morning due to the weather conditions.

"This significantly impacted on many drivers’ journeys when the road became impassable and the vehicles were then difficult to recover.

"Our aim is always for everyone to get where they are travelling to safely."

Officers have this advice to make sure your vehicle is prepared ahead of your journey:

  • Always ensure all windows are fully cleared of snow, frost and condensation before setting off on a journey - it is illegal to drive with obscured vision.
  • Ensure that dirt, salt and snow is cleared away from light fixtures.
  • Also clear snow from the top of the car as this can fall down and obscure your windscreen while you are driving.
  • Keep windscreen washer fluid topped up as windscreens quickly become dirty from traffic spray and salt from the roads.
  • If you get stuck in the snow stay with your car, but in an emergency if you do need to leave it, park it out of the main traffic route, where it won't cause an obstruction when conditions ease. Leave a contact number on the inside of the windscreen and return to your car at the first opportunity you have.
  • Allow extra time for your journeys
  • Reduce speed gradually – sharp braking in freezing conditions can result in a skid
  • Increase distance between you and the vehicle in front
  • Make sure you have sufficient fuel
  • Make sure you have plenty of layers and blankets
  • Take a fully charged mobile phone with you
  • Take provisions with you for long periods of time in your car

Superintendent Harvey continued: "Please follow our Twitter account at @norfolkpolice and our Facebook page at Norfolk Constabulary for updates of any road traffic collisions and areas to avoid. I would also advise you to listen to local radio stations and tune into weather reports to get an idea of the state of the roads.

"My final appeal is for you to look after each other. If you have elderly or vulnerable relatives or neighbours, make sure they are ok and have everything they need." 

Members of the public are asked to report any non-urgent matters online at www.norfolk.police.uk. In an emergency, always dial call 999.

Drivers warned to ‘drive to arrive’ in treacherous conditions

As the conditions worsen on Norfolk’s roads, the advice from police is to, "only get behind the wheel if it is completely necessary.”

Whilst the reported number of road traffic collisions remains relatively low (12 non injury RTCs and 1 injury RTC), the road conditions are making travel difficult with some journeys near to impossible.

The advice from Superintendent Chris Harvey is; "Only get behind the wheel if it is completely necessary. If you are going to travel, please make sure your vehicle is prepared for the journey ahead;

  • Always ensure all windows are fully cleared of snow, frost and condensation before setting off on a journey - it is illegal to drive with obscured vision.
  • Ensure that dirt, salt and snow is cleared away from light fixtures.
  • Also clear snow from the top of the car as this can fall down and obscure your windscreen while you are driving.
  • Keep windscreen washer fluid topped up as windscreens quickly become dirty from traffic spray and salt from the roads.
  • If you get stuck in the snow stay with your car, but in an emergency if you do need to leave it, park it out of the main traffic route, where it won't cause an obstruction when conditions ease. Leave a contact number on the inside of the windscreen and return to your car at the first opportunity you have.
  • Allow extra time for your journeys
  • Reduce speed gradually – sharp braking in freezing conditions can result in a skid
  • Increase distance between you and the vehicle in front
  • Make sure you have sufficient fuel
  • Make sure you have plenty of layers and blankets
  • Take a fully charged mobile phone with you
  • Take provisions with you for long periods of time in your car

"Please follow our twitter (@norfolkpolice) and our facebook page (/norfolkpolice) for updates of any road traffic collisions and areas to avoid. I would also advise to listen to local radio and tune into weather reports to get an idea of the state of the roads.

"Our priority is those who are already stuck or have been involved in an RTC. Please bear with us, we have to take the same precautions you do and it may take as slightly longer to get to you. This weather is likely to be here for the next 24hrs at least. Please think about how you are going to get around the county and if it is truly necessary.

"My final appeal is for you to look after each other. If you have elderly or vulnerable relatives or neighbours, make sure they are ok and have everything they need.”

Norfolk Police is receiving a high number of calls and we would like to ask the public to report any non-urgent matters online at www.norfolk.police.uk. In an emergency please call 999.